What Is a Boot Camp Diet?

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  • Written By: Gregory Hanson
  • Edited By: Susan Barwick
  • Last Modified Date: 02 January 2020
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A boot camp diet is one of several very rigorous weight loss regimens. Some versions of the boot camp diet actually seek to mimic the experience of going through boot camp the military. Other varieties use the term to refer to a relatively brief and focused period of intense weight loss. In all cases, anyone embarking on this type of diet should make sure to follow sensible guidelines for maintaining a healthy intake of food, both nutrients and total calories.

Most military forces have a short period of basic training, known colloquially as boot camp, to condition recruits for the rigors of military service and to greatly increase their fitness level. This type of training typically focuses on strength and endurance training and includes running, calisthenics, weight lifting, and a variety of other drills. Basic training has a reputation for whipping recruits into shape quickly, so both the exercise regimen and the name have been taken up by dieters.

The purest form of boot camp diet makes use of a fitness program based loosely on that used by the military. This sort of program works dieters very hard but also supplies a good deal of nutrient-rich food to aid in the rapid building of muscle tissue. This variety of workout typically involves only a little work with equipment and is generally conducted in groups. Many dieters find the shared experience helpful.


Some fitness boot camps include actual camps, where dieters retreat for a period of time to work in seclusion. This type of weight loss camp can be effective, but the time commitment is difficult for many people to meet. A simpler alternative involves participation in structured workout classes based on a boot camp system of exercise. Such classes are available through many gyms, often on very flexible schedules.

Other diets are referred to as boot camp diets. Any diet that proposes producing dramatic results in a short period of time may be labeled as a boot camp diet. Such diets have been formulated for brides-to-be, men and women who are anxious about the upcoming swimsuit season, and many other groups of dieters. Such diets can be effective but should be employed with a certain degree of caution Diets that are too drastic are apt to be unsuccessful over the medium or long term.


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